Improving the life of someone with severe disabilities?

So, I’m not currently a fulltime carer for my Mum anymore. Finding that having time to focus on my life has been great for not just myself but also our relationship. Time together seems to be much more meaningfully spent - Lately though i’ve been noticing my Mum is much quieter, noticably down and probably feeling more lonely now that I’m out the house, working etc. I’m quite concerned that she’s becoming more depressed than usual. I’m pretty much just seeking advice in terms of what my options are to help her boost her quality of life - She’s completely blind, very poor mobility due to osteoporosis, osteoathritis & currently has been bed bound for what feels like almost a year, after fracturing her leg in two places (for the second time within just one year) - on top of that, her hearing isnt so great anymore, she has type 1 diabetes which is usually out of control & when she tries to get on her feet, she tends to experience extreme shakiness… so this last year/two years - what little she had left of her physical health seems to be declining even more. She also has a history of heart disease. She’s only 59 and I grieve her life so much. I just wanna do what I can to help her enjoy what little she can - ultimately looking for any advice on how to improve her social life, keep her brain sharp (she’s showing a lot of confusion lately), also looking for ideas for fun activities that are suitable for a blind person (should also mention, due to type 1 diabetes, she has almost no feeling in her finger tips and feet, so her ability to hold things isnt that great) - I’m feeling at a loss - what can I do to help her? Bring her happiness etc? Any advice would be seriously appreciated. My Mum means the world to me & I’d like to do what I can to improve her quality of life in any way possible! (She’s only 59!!)

What is mum’s level of hearing?

Does mum listen to music or audio books.

Hi Justkel.
in addition to the RNIB, you could contact SENSE, they have experience working with people with more complex needs including dual impairments.

Does she like animals? If so, you could arrange for a PAL dog to visit with their owner - she would get to stroke/cuddle the dog and have a chat with their owner too. If her hearing allows talking books would be good - the library should be able to help with this.

Some areas have luncheon clubs for the elderly, would she cope with a volunteer coming to collect her and drive her there?

Can you describe what she can manage to do with her hands, as it might help us to suggest more activities.


That’s really hard. On both your poor Mum and you, trying your best for her. I expect you have already explored these?

Sense is a UK-based charity that provides advice and support for deafblind people. The Sense helpline number is 0300 330 9256 (same number for textphone). Alternatively, you can email Sense:

Deafblind UK is another national charity that supports deafblind people and those with progressive sight and hearing loss.

You can contact Deafblind UK’s helpline for information and advice on 0800 132320 (both voice and text calls). You can also email Deafblind UK:

I wonder if Mum’s sense of smell can be used in any way?
As a small pleasure, how about a range of hand creams of different scents that she could chose from each day? Similar with soap.
Massage? There’s taste of course. Favourite foods?
If Mum can still hear somewhat, I assume she has appropriate hearing aids? Could she listen to audio books? There are loads available.
Poor lady. I can’t imagine how hard it must be to be locked in a shrinking, dark world and in pain too.

How have you got on since you posted?
I think a great thing to do would be to help bring her sugars into range. Have you had any training/input to help you understand type 1 diabetes? If she has low/high blood sugar it’s really dangerous and she would feel terrible all the time. My daughter has this awful immune disease and I manage it for her helping her with tests etc. X

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